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Declaration of UDI

"In the lives of most nations there comes a moment when a stand has to be made for principle, whatever the consequences. This moment has come to Rhodesia. I pray, and I hope other Rhodesians will pray today, that our government will be given the wisdom and strength to bring Rhodesia safely through.

I call upon all of you in this historic hour to support me and my government in the struggle in which we are engaged. I believe that we are a courageous people and history has cast us in a heroic role. To us has been given the privilege of being the first Western nation in the last two decades to have the determination and fortitude to say "so far and no further".

We may be a small country, but we are a determined people who have been called upon to play a role of world-wide significance. We Rhodesians have rejected the doctrinaire philosophy of appeasement and surrender. The decision which we have taken today is a refusal by Rhodesians to sell their birth-right, and even if we were to surrender, does anyone believe that Rhodesia would be the last target of the Communists and the Afro-Asian bloc?

We have struck a blow for the preservation of justice, civilization and Christianity, and in the spirit of this belief have this day assumed our sovereign independence.

God bless you all."

Ian Douglas Smith 11th November, 1965